Message from the Bishop of Penang, Rt. Rev. Sebastian Francis

I am pleased to announce that the Catholic Church will be undertaking a project to restore the Church of the Assumption to its original condition of 1928. This Church was first built in the year 1860 and completed in 1861. In 1928, it underwent an extension when two wings were added to cater for the growing Catholic population. Since then, no major works were carried out other than the normal repairs and maintenance for wear and tear. This Church has much historical significance as it was built by the descendants of the Eurasians who were facing persecution in Ligor and Phuket. In 1781, the Eurasians fled to Kuala Kedah, led by Bishop Arnaud-Antoine Garnault of Siam. Subsequently they followed Captain Francis Light to Penang when he established it as a British trading post.

Since Georgetown was recognised as an UNESCO Cultural World Heritage Site on 7 July 2008, it has under gone tremendous transformation with many heritage buildings being restored to their former glory. It is in this spirit, that the Catholic Church sees it timely to also embark to restore the Church of the Assumption to its former glory. The restored Church will provide a more conducive environment to the faithful to partake in the Church services. Tourists and pilgrims will also get to enjoy and experience praying in a new environment of the restored Church. Not to mention the enhancing value to be contributed to the Heritage Site as another tourist attraction.

The restoration cost is estimated at RM2.5 million of which RM0.5 million will be contributed by the Church itself with the balance to be raised from fund raising activities lined up by the Fund Raising Committee.

In conclusion, I appeal to all Catholics as well as the public for your generosity to contribute by way of donations to this prestigious project.

Thank you.

Rt. Rev. Sebastian Francis

The Titular Roman Catholic Bishop of Penang


Message from Father Gerard Theraviam, Chairman of the Assumption Church Restoration Committee

My committee and I have already set in motion our fund-raising activities for the Assumption Church Restoration Project. Assumption Church is already a monumental landmark in the Georgetown Heritage Site situated almost next door to many other notable buildings such as St George’s Church, the High Courts, the Logan Memorial, as well as Convent Light Street and St Xavier’s Institution. Our restoration will enhance the historical value of our beautiful city of Georgetown.

As a child my family often came to this church and so I have a personal connection to this House of God wherein saints and sinners have worshipped together. It certainly is an awesome building and each day we welcome many tourists and pilgrims who come to view this historical gem. At the weekends, many people come to join our services; some also to savour the beautiful sounds of our recently restored pipe organ.

The Majlis Bandaraya Pulau Pinang (City Council) approved the restoration plans on 14 April 2016. The projected time frame of the restoration works, inside and outside, is about 14 months and is expected to kick off on 1 September 2016 through to 31 October 2017. The scope of work will include replacement of the existing glass louvres windows with timber shutter windows as used in 1928. Extensive repair works will be carried out inside and outside. In addition, various new amenities shall be installed or upgraded to enhance comfort and aesthetics such as the introduction of a new air-conditioning system, new sound system, new projectors, concealed rewiring works and internal/external lighting. The existing sanctuary will be upgraded to enhance its heritage value and external landscaping works will also be carried out.

The restoration cost is estimated at RM2.5 million of which RM0.5 million will be contributed by the Church itself with the balance to be raised from fund raising activities lined up by the Fund Raising Committee.

Therefore, I humbly appeal to you for a donation as we strive to meet the cost of this restoration project. May we be proud to declare that we have contributed to the restoration of this historical landmark in our island state not only for its heritage value but also as an additional place of worship for the rapidly growing Catholic population.

Thank you.

Father Gerard Theraviam
Assumption Church Restoration Committee


Message from the Chairman of Fund Raising Committee 

My committee and I are indeed very honoured to be tasked with the responsibility of raising RM2.0 million to fund the restoration project of the Church of the Assumption. The total estimated restoration cost amounts to RM2.5 million of which RM0.5 million will be contributed by the Church itself. This prestigious project entails an iconic building located in the Georgetown Heritage Site where other buildings of huge historical significance have already been restored or renovated. Therefore this project is not only confined to the Catholic population but is also opened to people of all races in Penang regardless of status and religion as it should be the pride of every one living in the State.

We are in the midst of organising the following 3 major fund raising activities:

1. Assumption Food Fair to be held on the grounds of the Church on 3 December 2016, targeting to raise RM100,000.

2. Appeal via online and letters. Target is RM1.0 million.

3. Sale of raffle tickets with the grand prize of a car. Target is RM1.0 million.

We appeal for the generosity of fellow Catholics and the public at large to make this prestigious project a success.

Thank you.

Mr John Lau
Fund Raising Committee